Special Address by Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda
On the Occasion of the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum
Embassy of Japan
January 30, 2008
Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda visited the Swiss Confederation on January 25 to attend the World Economic Forum, an annual meeting of political and economic leaders and scholars from around the world. The Forum, also known as the Davos Meeting because it takes place in Davos, Switzerland, was held on January 26 this year. On that day, Prime Minister Fukuda delivered a special address, in which he discussed the world economy, climate change, development and Africa.
On the world economy, Prime Minister Fukuda said that the risk of the global economy taking a downward turn is increasing against the backdrop of the sub-prime mortgage loan problem in the United States and the surge of petroleum prices to record levels, among other issues. He also stated that, in light of this, he would formulate an economic growth strategy in concrete terms. As part of this, Prime Minister Fukuda expressed his intention to continue advancing efforts towards market liberalization, including reforms in the areas of foreign direct investment in Japan, trade procedures, and the financial and capital markets, thereby enabling the Japanese economy to expand in step with growth around the globe.
Concerning climate change, Prime Minister Fukuda said he would discuss it as a top priority at the Hokkaido Toyako G8 Summit, to be chaired by Japan in July this year. He then announced his "Cool Earth Promotion Programme," designed to advance the set of strategies Japan had proposed last year called "Cool Earth 50." As part of the Programme, Prime Minister Fukuda proposed to set a global target of a 30% improvement in energy efficiency by 2020. Furthermore, he presented plans to establish a new financial mechanism, Cool Earth Partnership, on the scale of US$10 billion. Through this, he said, Japan will cooperate actively with developing countries' efforts to reduce emissions, such as efforts to enhance energy efficiency. At the same time, Japan will extend the hand of assistance to developing countries suffering severe adverse impacts as a result of climate change.
Concerning development and Africa , Prime Minister Fukuda said he would convene the Fourth Tokyo International Conference on African Development, or TICAD IV, in Yokohama in May to advance discussions on African development under the theme of "Towards a Vibrant Africa."
He concluded his speech with a message that Japan would exercise leadership in the interest of enhancing the stability and prosperity of international society.
The transcript of the entire address is available at:
Prime Minister Fukuda delivered another speech to open the session on “The Responsibility to Protect: Human Security and International Action." For the transcript of this speech, please see:
* Policy Speech by Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda to the 169 th Session of the Diet ( January 18, 2008 )
* G8 Hokkaido Toyako Summit website
* The Forth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD IV) website
* Speech by Foreign Minister Koumura, “ Japan and Tanzania : Partners towards a Vibrant Africa ” ( January 4, 2008 )